A BBC investigation has found 750 patients suffered from a never event in England’s hospitals over the past four years.

A never event is a serious incident that should not ever happen in a healthcare environment. The Department of Health has categorised 25 different never events, all of which can be avoided with the correct safety procedures. Some of these include operating on the wrong body part and leaving an instrument inside a patient.

But despite there being strict guidelines in place to prevent these incidents occurring, 750 never events have been recorded in English hospitals over the past four years. Of these 750 cases, there were:

  • 322 cases of foreign objects left inside patients during operations;
  • 214 cases of surgery on the wrong body part;
  • 73 cases of tubes used for feeding or medication being inserted into patients’ lungs;
  • 58 cases of wrong implants or prostheses being fitted.

Dr Mike Durkin, director of patient safety for NHS England, said 750 never events were “too many”. He added: “One is too many in any week, in any day, in any hospital. We need to understand what it is, in some systems and in some hospitals, that that team working hasn’t produced an effective outcome and a mistake, a ‘never event’, has occurred.”

Have you suffered a never event?

If you or your loved one has suffered a never event, you will of course be extremely angry and upset by what has happened. However, there is action you can take, as it is very possible you will be in a position to pursue legal action against the NHS Trust responsible.

Although this will not undo the damage that has been done, it will allow you to obtain compensation, helping you achieve a sense of justice for the medical negligence you have encountered.

To find out more, do not hesitate to contact us at Glynns Solicitors today.

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